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nabaa refai

Data Scientist, TUI

 

And - Prior, MORSE student at University of Warwick

It was the [application] of mathematical techniques to real world problems that I enjoyed the most.

What do you do?

In a nutshell, my day to day job consists of using data and scientific methods to help TUI make better business decisions. These decisions can range from what hotels we should be contracting with so that we can provide the best holiday experience for our customers to what food we should be selling on our planes.

Why did you choose this field?

"I spent a lot of time talking to people about what they do."

I’ve always been a very logical person and enjoyed problem solving and maths throughout my time at school. I went on to study Mathematics, Operational Research , Statistics and Economics at University and it was the courses the allowed me to apply mathematical techniques to real world problems that I enjoyed the most.

 

I did various internships to get a view of the working world. It was through all these experiences that I realised I wanted to work with data and I wanted my work to make an impact, hence kicking of a career in Data Science!

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

"I wish I hadn't been so scared to speak up for fear of being wrong."

I never had much confidence in myself and my abilities when I was younger. In the 5 years of my career to date I’ve had the opportunity to present at various data science forums, lead teams and develop others and make a tangible contribution to the projects I’ve worked on. I wish I had known that anything is possible if you put your mind to it!

Why do you love working in STEM?

I love having a new problem to solve and I have a thirst for learning. With technology constantly changing and advancing I have to keep on top of what’s in the market to make sure we are using the best tools around to do Data Science effectively. I love having to keep on top of this and keep thinking of different ways to approach problems. It’s also really rewarding to see models you’ve developed being put into practice, productionised and used to make a difference!

Best advice for the next generation

Believe in yourself and join communities and groups that can help you form a good network of role models and people to learn from/with.

Inspo quote

Don't let the fact that STEM careers are traditionally male dominated put you off.